Top 10 Richest Athletes Under 30 for 2013

So what were (are?) you doing before you turned (turn?) 30 years old? Partying your way through college? Diligently trying to climb your career ladder while making peanuts and eating ramen noodles?

So what were (are?) you doing before you turned (turn?) 30 years old?

Partying your way through college? Diligently trying to climb your career ladder while making peanuts and eating ramen noodles? Slacking on your parents' couch and playing video games?

Well, some people were blessed with superior athletic talent and are playing sports at the professional level and earning excellent salaries doing it (even if they have to ride the bench most of the time). You're probably watching a lot of these athletes on TV. Maybe you're even shelling out your hard-earned money to buy tickets to see them live, or purchasing a certain athlete's jersey or shoes, or even betting on how well they'll do in their next game.

And then, there are those select few athletes who are prodigies even among their peers: the top 1% of the top 1%. These are the ones who tend to be known by a single name, are discussed frequently on your favorite sports shows, and are recording achievements not reached by the majority of their teammates and competitors. As part of their success, these individuals are being sought after by companies large and small to pitch, wear, or represent their products, which results in hefty endorsement deals and (of course) even more cash for these already-rich athletes.

These athletes are making ungodly amounts of money and haven't even entered their fourth decade of life yet. They are the nouveau riche of the sports world and could retire tomorrow without ever working a day in their life - but they'll probably continue to amass even more cash in the future (provided they don't go bankrupt).

Do you love these athletes? Are you inspired by them? Do you chuckle when they stumble or fall? Or is there some truth to all of these?

As a public service, we have assembled a list of the ten richest athletes under 30 which you can envy, hate, adore, or emulate. All monetary figures are 2013 earnings as compiled by Forbes Magazine, and all ages are current as of April 1, 2014.

10 Lewis Hamilton, F1 Racing - $27.5 million

Jerome Miron/USA TODAY Sports Images

9 Carmelo Anthony, Basketball - $28 million

Anthony Gruppuso/USA TODAY Sports Images

8 Maria Sharapova, Tennis - $29 million

Jayne Kamin-Oncea/USA TODAY Sports Images

7 Rory McIlroy, Golf - $29.6 million

Andrew Weber/USA TODAY Sports Images

6 Kevin Durant, Basketball - $30.9 million

Mark D. Smith/USA TODAY Sports Images

5 Joe Flacco, Football - $36.8 million

Jerry Lai/USA TODAY Sports Images

4 Derrick Rose, Basketball - $37.4 million

Dennis Wierzbicki/USA TODAY Sports Images

3 Lionel Messi, Soccer - $41.3 million

Rondeau/Presse Sports via USA TODAY Sports Images

2 Cristiano Ronaldo, Soccer - $44 million

Scott Rovak/USA TODAY Sports Images

1 LeBron James, Basketball - $59.8 million

Robert Mayer/USA TODAY Sports Images

It's good to be The King. The 29-year old James is the NBA's most marketable star by far. The A-list of companies who are benefiting from his endorsements includes Coca-Cola, McDonald's, Nike, Upper Deck, Dunkin Donuts, Audemars Piguet, and Samsung (He also inked a royalty agreement with Beats by Dre Wireless Studio headphones). James' NBA jersey was the top seller in the NBA this past year. And you know how we mentioned Carmelo Anthony's shoe sales earlier? LeBron's shoe line outsold his (and Kobe's) in the U.S. by more than six to one. And with his two NBA Championship Rings, two Olympic gold medals, and four NBA MVP awards, LeBron's bank account can easily go higher. Only Tiger Woods, Roger Federer, and Kobe Bryant earn more money as athletes - in any age bracket.

Give TheRichest a Thumbs up!

Looking for an AD FREE EXPERIENCE on TheRichest?

Get Your Free Access Now!

More in Sports (old)

Top 10 Richest Athletes Under 30 for 2013